snow map
Snowfall for 6 hrs ending Tuesday 07 Jan at 1am NZDT

Snowfall for 6 hrs ending Tuesday 07 Jan at 1am NZDT
Southlanders could be forgiven for thinking it was the middle of winter as they woke to snow on the hills on Monday morning.

Snow fell in the high country in Northern Southland overnight on Sunday as a January cold snap continued in the province.

Out on the coast, Metservice issued a strong wind warning for southwest gales up to 120kmh for coastal Southland, Clutha and Stewart Island, warning gusts in exposed places could bring down trees and powerlines.

On Sunday afternoon, a driver and passenger received medical treatment after gale winds blew over a campervan north of Balclutha.

A police spokesperson said trees were bought down in Charlotte St in Balclutha on Sunday, and on Monday morning another blew over on the Chaslands Highway, blocking one lane, but there were no other reports of damage.

Metservice forecaster Lisa Murray said Southland had been stuck in a spring-like weather pattern since mid-November, with westerly winds bringing rain.

"You're not alone. Quite a few places around the country are wondering where summer went - I know it hasn't been very good in Wellington either."

Monday's snow fell to 1500m, which was "cold, but we do get snow sometimes in summer", she said.

Temperatures had been below average in Invercargill. The mean temperature for December was usually 13.1 degrees Celsius but last month it had been 12.5C.

"When you average it out across a month people would notice that. The seasons seem to be a little bit out of whack this year."

Looking at the forecast for the province, she said it was "not looking that great, to be particularly honest".

The next few weeks would be cooler than average, although we could see the odd 25C day.

"It will be slightly cooler overall."

Short-term, the southwest wind pattern would continue until Tuesday night, when the overnight low would be a chilly 7C.

However, temperatures were expected into the high teens on Wednesday, with showers later in the day.

"It could get to 18 - you could almost call that summery."

The wind would turn more westerly on Friday and northerly on Saturday, she said.

"It might even break into the 20s."

Firefighters were called to numerous wind-related jobs on Monday.

A trampoline was blown onto a neighbour's fence on Kelso Cres, in Strathern in Invercargill, and scaffolding on Tay St, between Dee and Kelvin streets, blew over.

Two roofs also needed to be secured; one on Bamborough St, Richmond, and another on Bill Richardson Drive, near Victoria Ave.

Source: Southland Times